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[7/10/10] Calling all coffee lovers!
Which is the BEST Fairtrade instant coffee? We were sitting in a meeting and discussion moved on to the question of who drinks Fairtrade instant coffee? and which do they recommend? We couldn't agree and thought why don't we try to find out?

And so on 11th Sept in the Enterprise Centre in the 'Good and Fair' shop we servd up samples of Fairtrade instant coffee from Cafe Direct, Clipper, Percol, Co-op and Traidcraft and we asked passersby to vote for their favourite.

Fairtrade coffee gets local approval

"We spend a lot of our time encouraging businesses, churches and organisations to switch to Fairtrade, but we didn't agree on which instant coffee was the best." said Fairtrade Eastbourne Chair Matt Wilkinson.

"Instants may not get the coffee lovers all excited but they do serve a purpose in the morning or when you fancy a quick break at work" said Peter Watts from Good and Fair.  "If we can make a difference to Fairtrade producers and get a good tasting coffee then both sides win!"

And the winner on the day was Percol Americano.  "I'm currently in discussions with my suppliers and hope to add this Fairtrade coffee to my shelves in the near future." said Peter.

See more photos on our Facebook page

[12/7/10] Shared Interest vist Fairtrade Eastbourne
At Fairtrade EB's June meeting we were treated to a talk and presentation about the work of Shared Interest, an ethical investment co-operative that lends money to fair trade businesses in the developing world. As we learnt through the course of the presentation, the financial support they offer can really help to kick start a fair trade business and in turn help improve the lives of both producers and their communities.
Sally Reith from Shared Interest spoke for around one hour and began with the poignant message that as the world is in the grip of the 'global recession', the phrase 'tightening your belt' is no metaphor, but a literal reality for millions of producers in developing countries. 
Established in 1990, Shared Interest (SI) continues to be the world's only 100% fair trade lender and has more than 8,800 members with each member having a say. It is a response to the so- called 'coyotes' who prey on vulnerable people who lack the security and trade relationships that would allow them to seek a better price. Staff at the Costa Rica office have reported local lenders offering loans of 40% interest!

In it's 20 years the co-operative has only a 2% default rate. This is from people who are often considered 'too risky' to invest with!!! It goes to show that producer groups and farmers in the developing world just need the opportunity to prosper, 'a hand up, not a hand out.'
From their first office in Newcastle, UK, Shared Interest has grown to have offices in Peru, Kenya and Costa Rica and now have ambitions to move into Asia.  SI aims to be accessible to both producers and investors. The money generated from the interest rate on loans is 'recycled' back into the SI coffers and in turn more people to benefit.  All loans are subject to approval and aim to help those that could use the funding the most, mainly as an initial start-up or to fund new business ventures etc. To allow credibility for lending a business must be Fairtrade certified.

The co-operative also have a charity arm called the Shared Interest Foundation. Through this some organisations can receive grants for training, facilities and other forms of help to get businesses off the ground. They also try and provide much needed funding for vulnerable or struggling businesses and producer groups in the event of shocks such as market collapses and crop failures. For example, Zimbabwe in recent years has had producers helped by the SI Foundation to try and cope with the effects of challenges the country is facing.

Case Study 1: Canaan Fair Trade

Based in Jenin, Palestine, Canaan sells olive oil and other delicacies produced by over 1,700 small farmers organized in informal cooperatives and represented by the Palestine Fair Trade Association (PFTA).  It was established in 2004 and uses the fair trade concept to empower marginalized Palestinian rural communities caught in conflict so they can sustain their livelihoods and culture.
In 2008 Canaan FT took out a loan with Shared Interest to part finance new storage and bottling facilities. The loan was for $635,000 which was repayable over 5 years. As well as this a further $100,000 was lent to enable the production of goods in advance of receiving the first payments from the buyers, allowing for the transition and the business to develop. After a query from a member of the audience, it was clarified that this $100,000 was separate from the Fairtrade Social Premium - the extra sum paid on each FT certified product which goes into social and community projects.

Case Study 2: Bega Kwa Bega- (BkB)
The group were also treated to a short film about Bega Kwa Bega- (BkB), a co-operative society based in the Korogocho slum district of Nairobi, Kenya.  The name translates as 'Shoulder To Shoulder' from Kiswahili.  It was set up in 1991 under the umbrella of the local Catholic church. It's aim is to rehabilitate girls and women who have lived on the streets or been subject to abuse or exploitation as a result of the extreme poverty found in the area, where millions live on less than $1 US a day.
The products coming out of BkB are mainly handicrafts such as baskets and jewellery.  The project Coordinator, Ignatius Joseph spoke about how through SI's support they have been able to buy new sewing machines and office equipment and expand the business to allow more people to benefit. He also spoke of how the trust and commitment through an open and transparent system is empowering people in the community- 'everyone is involved'. The co-op put 20% of their annual profits back into community projects.
To watch the video as well as others by Shared Interest, please click HERE

Members include individuals, schools, businesses and faith groups and the money that they have invested is used to support member co-operatives and producers throughout the developing world.

How can we get involved?
You could invest some money, donate to the SI Foundation, volunteer to spread the word or become an advocate or ambassador for the work of Shared Interest.  Investors come from all sections of the community, from Churches and Synagogues to a school tuck shop which, as Sally Reith pointed out, is a particularly nice idea as children are learning first hand about how trade can really be beneficial to everyone when conducted in a fair and just manner.

[6/3/10] Fairtrade Flaskmob
Eastbourne shoppers were greeted by the town's first ever 'Flaskmob' as Fairtrade supporters gathered together in the town centre to toast the end of Fairtrade Fortnight.

Along with two giant inflatable tea mugs with 'Swap your cuppa!' printed on the side, the campaigners handed out samples of Fairtrade tea and each brought a flask of a Fairtrade hot drink to enjoy.

"We wanted to do something eyecatching and out of the ordinary to remind shoppers to look for the Fairtrade Mark." said Matt Wilkinson from Fairtrade Eastbourne.

"We promoted this gathering using our new Facebook Fan page, which is a great way to keep in touch with our supporters."

Fairtrade Eastbourne are campaigning to make Eastbourne a Fairtrade Town and regularly put on stalls, speakers, films and events to raise public and business awareness to the positive impact of Fairtrade.

For more information on this local campaign visit www.fairtradeeastbourne.org.uk

[3/3/10] Eastbourne Mayor brings Fairtrade message
Eastbourne Mayor Greg Szanto joined this week with Fairtrade Eastbourne campaigners to take a Fairtrade message to local businesses.

To mark Fairtrade Fortnight the Mayor helped to deliver free samples of Fairtrade tea to hairdressers, an optician, a travel agency, a clothing shop, cafés and other businesses along Grove Road on Wednesday 3rd March.  The team wanted to encourage those they spoke to to choose Fairtrade for their business.

"We've delivered a lot of tea samples around the town centre in recent weeks and we had a great response from everyone, especially today with the Mayor." said Group Chair of Fairtrade Eastbourne Matt Wilkinson.

"We are committed to achieving Fairtrade Town Status for Eastbourne, its residents and for poor farmers in Developing Countries.  We need the support of businesses to make our application."

An Eastbourne business can support the local Fairtrade campaign by choosing to switch to using Fairtrade products and then by registering as a Fairtrade Eastbourne business on the campaign's website at www.fairtradeeastbourne.org.uk

"I think Grove Road could become a real Fairtrade hotspot as we've already had registrations through on our website." said Matt

The Mayor also spoke to Georgina Bauer in The Funky Viking children's clothing shop and heard how she uses 100% Fairtrade for her café.

"I choose Fairtrade because of the positive difference it makes to the livelihoods of the producers.  It has not been at any significant additional cost and it is the right choice for my business" says Georgina.

The Cred Foundation: Transforming Lives
On Tuesday 15th September 2009, the upstairs room at Bibendum was packed out with local people keen to hear from Paul Sanderson MBE, Director, Cred Foundation.

Paul did not disappoint, the public and Fairtrade Eastbourne were treated to an engaging and inspiring account of the work of Cred Foundation.

Cred Foundation is a charity delivering play schemes to disabled children in the developing world. UK young people volunteer to take part in the delivery of the play schemes. They are responsible for raising money for their trip. It is a life changing experience for many.

We heard how positive an experience it had been for young volunteers from a range of backgrounds, from Arundel Castle to a disadvantaged estate in Littlehampton. The experience served to build relationships between these diverse young people as well as helping them to appreciate growing up in the Western world. We were fortunate to hear from Paul’s son Zack who had accompanied his dad on one of the trips to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The play schemes have enabled vulnerable and often forgotten children in Ethopia, India and Colombia to have unforgettable experiences. Cred Foundation will soon be visiting Burmese Refugee children on the Thai border.

The work of the Cred Foundation is funded by donations and by its sister company Cred Jewellery. Cred Jewellery sells quality jewellery, which is produced using ethically sourced metals and precious stones. There is a shop in Littlehampton and an on line store. Cred Jewellery is leading the campaign for Fairtrade gold, which is an industry known to be very destructive and exploitative to people and the environment.

To find out more about Cred Foundation and Cred Jewellery see www.cred.org.uk

Fairtrade Feedback
Join us at our next monthly meeting on Tuesday 20th October, upstairs in Bibendum at 7:30pm to hear from our members recently returning from a Campaigner's Conference at the Fairtrade Foundation in London.  This inspirational, practical and informative event takes place each year for activists to meet their counterparts campaigning across the country, share ideas, take part in workshops and hear about the latest activities at the Fairtrade Foundation.  This year included a talk by BBC journalist and newsreader George Alagiah and a question and answer session with the Chief Executive of the Fairtrade Foundation Harriet Lamb and the Secretary of State for International Development Douglas Alexander MP.  There was also an opportunity for campaigners to put questions to a panel including a Fairtrade farmer, a top economist, and a representative from the Divine Chocolate company.

"It was a very educational and motivating day." said Fairtrade Eastbourne campaigner Jim Thomas.  "It was great to share experiences and thoughts with so many active supporters and top ambassadors of the movement.  We listened as producers told us of the benefits that Fairtrade has brought to their lives and the communities they represent. They included top figures from both a banana co-operative on the Windward Islands and a cocoa farming region of Belize."

Jim returns to tell about Fairtrade!
Fairtrade Eastbourne campaigner Jim Thomas recently returned from a trip of a life time to Uganda where he visited a coffee project and saw for himself how Fairtrade can make a real difference. 

Jim travelled with Sussex Downs College and visited, with other students, villages and schools and worked on a development project for 7 weeks.  On a  day excursion the group visited the Peace Kawomera Co-operative that sells coffee to the US as Fairtrade.  The co-operative is made up of 1500 farms representing 25 000 coffee farmers.  Since 2004 Fairtrade has enabled farmers to send their children to school, start savings accounts, and reinvest in their farm.

"It was incredible to see such a beautiful country and to meet such a warm and friendly people." said Jim

"Sussex Downs College has been making links and working with communities and projects in South Eastern Uganda for over 4 years now. The college has organised Study tours for students (most of whom are studying World Development) that allow them the opportunity to witness development work for themselves, as well as giving them a glimpse of what life is like for so many people in Africa and all over the world- a life trapped in poverty.
"Since its establishment in 1995 BRDC have helped over 20,000 people through outreach work alone. BRDC offers knowledge and advice and does not give handouts. In the community they advise people on many issues ranging from getting safe water and making good compost for their crops to generating income from selling vegetables etc. At the centre they give training in practical skills such as carpentry, building, tailoring and agriculture. These skills give the people a sense of achievement and hope and increase their likelihood of making a living. The centres motto- 'Helping others to help themselves' really sums it up."

Uganda has enjoyed economic growth over the last decade yet remains one of the world's most impoverished countries. Average life expectancy is 50 years and 31% of the population live below the national poverty line (roughly 60 pence a day). Uganda relies heavily on agriculture, the basis of livelihood for 85% of the population. Climate change is having a devastating effect on many in Uganda, as over 2 million are currently facing starvation due to poor harvests. This is because the rains are no longer reliable and the people there have been noticing this, as well as other changes, for 20 years.
The major export crop is coffee which grows high in the Ugandan mountains. Coffee growers in Uganda can sell their '
red' coffee beans for 300 shillings a kilo or shell and dry them as 'green' beans for 800 shillings.  A British pound is worth approximately 3500 shillings.  A kilo of coffee certified as Fairtrade however is sold at the Fairtrade minimum price of 3000 shillings.

Jim spoke at the August Fairtrade Eastbourne meeting upstairs in the Bibendum pub describing his trip and the difference he saw made by Fairtrade. 
"I've been involved with the Fairtrade group for about a year and a half and I've become more and more enthusiastic about Fairtrade.  Such a small thing to us as choosing a particular brand of coffee at the supermarket means such a big difference to those growing the coffee. I can now say I have met people who through Fairtrade have had their lives changed for the better, and can plan for the future- to develop"
"Finally, to fulfil my promise to many Ugandans, I would like to give everyone reading this greetings and love from Uganda!"

[19/04/07] Council passes Fairtrade Motion:
Eastbourne Borough Council unaminously passed a motion supporting more Fairtrade in Eastbourne at its April meeting.
 Council Leader Ian Lucas said "The council have shown they are wholeheartedly behind the campaign to make Eastbourne a Fairtrade town, and will play it’s part in making that happen.  I personally am committed to Fairtrade as a concept, as it ensures a fair pay for the manufacturers and growers.  We can all make a difference to alleviating poverty if we ask for Fairtrade" .  Leader of the Liberal Democrats Councillors David Tutt said "Fairtrade is exactly that, ensuring that we pay a fair price to others for the goods they produce, it deserves the support of our whole community".  Clive Gross said "As both Chair of the Fairtrade Campaign and Eastbourne Green Party spokesperson, I was delighted that the motion achieved all-party unanimous support in the Council Chamber. There is a genuine political commitment behind Fairtrade in Eastbourne now, to match the widespread public support the local campaign group has received over the last two years. Achieving Fairtrade Town status in 2007 will be just one further landmark for the campaign, not the end of it.”

The motion was drafted in cooperation with Fairtrade Eastbourne and members of the group took the opportunity to speak to the council before the debate.  Click here to read the motion

15/03/07] Petitions handed in:
Over the whole term of our campaign we have been collecting signatures for a petition to make Eastbourne a Fairtrade Town.   We counted over 3000 signatures before handing it over to Mayor of Eastbourne Colin Belsy (right). Let's hope this encourages the Council to support our campaign.

Thankyou to every one of you who took the time to give us your signature, and here's to the council listening!

Supplied by the Eastbourne Herald

stall[11/03/07] Fairtrade fortnight ends:
                fornight 2007A big thankyou to everyone who participated in FT fortnight
2007 , events that took place included a fashion show , quiz , open mike night , Gospel choir, rennaisence choir and the presentation of our on going petition to the Mayor of Eastbourne Colin Belsey. We distributed ask for Fairtrade cards for the very first time , encouraging consumers to ask if the FT brand is absent on a menu or shelf.

Even though officialy Fairtrade Fortnight is over , there is still our digital photography competition to participate in, the prizes for the best 'Fairtrade in Eastbourne' and 'Unfair trade' photos are a worthwhile collection of FT goodies so don't hesitate to  send your photos to:  fteb_photos@yahoo.co.uk

Life gospel choir [11/03/07] Fairtrade Gospel
The Eastbourne life Gospel choir closed fairtrade fortnight and stunned passers by with a thrilling set dedicated to the promotion of the fairtrade brand. In between each epic number the issue of world trade was directed at the onlookers by the choir leader. On behalf of the Eastbourne fairtrade group we would like to say thankyou to the Life gospel choir for dedicating their saturday morning to fairtrade.


                    and benson[05/03/07]
Open Mike Night.
Last thursday night an Open mike night competition at the skybar was exclusively devoted to fairtrade( for fairtrade fortnight), leaflets were littered on tables and the bar and the colourful eastbourne fairtrade banner was behind the volunteering musicians. With a variety of original material and covers from anyone who could sing or play, the night proved to be fun for everyone who turned up.

Winners were: Alex speirs, Ben Nicholas
Danney Pulleyn and Richard Criden. Each recieved a bottle of fairtrade wine.


east magazine[26/02/07] East magazine
Our very own Matt Wilkinson is interviewed this month in East magazine, be sure to check out the interview which is all about Fairtrade.. We are delighted particularly as it's the month EAST branches out and is now distributed in Hastings and Bexhill.

[24/02/07] Fairtrade fortnight
fairtrade fornight
                  2007The most important time of the year for our group is Fairtrade Fortnight which this year is the 26th February-11th March. Keep a check on our calendar of events for what's happening.

passion[23/02/07] pre-Fairtrade fortnight - passion for fashion
 We are now just 3 days away to fairtrade fortnight and last night our group hosted a fairtrade fashion show at Park college to get things kick started. On show were a variety of clothes items that will be listed on our website with links to where you can purchase them, along with pictures of the night. Thankyou to all those who participated on this fabulous night , where hopefully a few more people got enlightened to our campaign.

[01/01/07] Letter for 2007
Happy new year from the Eastbourne Fairtrade group , to kick the new year off, we have a letter for 2007, explaining how to further our campaign in bringing fairtrade status to the town....

click here to read the letter

[18/12/06] Washed away

washed our logo awayIn the early hours of last Sunday, a group of ourf campaigners were watching their message being washed from Eastbourne's streets. Early-bird Fairtrade supporters chalked the organisation's distinctive logo on the precinct paving on Terminus Road, in time for shops opening. But quicker than you can say ‘Fairtrade Eastbourne’ our efforts were eradicated thanks to a council hose.

A council spokesperson said, 'The Council's contractors cleaned the streets as they would normally. In the future if organisations want to display art in this manner they should contact the Council to ask for it to be left for a set amount of time.'

Were the council correct in effectively treating this as vandalism?

10/09/2006] Fairtrade gig
The town is now nearer to acheiving Fairtrade status thanks to local musicians.

A host of talent provided an evening of acoustic music at Cafe Blue last Wednesday, to raise money and awareness for Fairtrade Eastbourne, the cafe blue was packed out , which was very encouraging for the group....
for a few review of the night click here


imgFairtrade Eastbourne Petition
As part of our application for Fairtrade Town Status later this year, we will be presenting a petition of local residents in support of increased use and availability of Fairtrade goods in Eastbourne.
In just a short time we have already collected over 2000 signatures and you can help us by downloading and getting your friends to sign one of our petition forms. To get a copy of the form click here.
Please return your completed forms to Fairtrade Eastbourne, 54 Upperton Gardens, Eastbourne BN21 2AQ.

imgTrade Justice Movement Rally

Members of our group travelled up to London to play Eastbourne's part in the Trade Justice Movement Mass Lobby of Parliament. It is encouraging to learn that we share common ground with Nigel Waterson on removing domestic subsidies and import tariffs. However, Nigel does not agree that developing countries should be allowed to protect their industries from outside competition, taking the free trade line. It was argued that rebalancing trade rules was the best way to produce significant and sustainable development that was urgently needed. Members came away pleased that at least their message was heard.


Launch Event Success!

Our campaign launch event held at the Underground Theatre on September 5th was a great success. Keynote speakers Bruce Crowther, Simeon Greene and Cllr Ruth O'Keefe were complimented by arange of Fairtrade stalls, refresments and displays, plus excellent live musiv from the AccousticCollective. Over 120 people attended a really entertaining and informative night!


East Magazine Feature

If you pick up a copy of the new September East Magazine from just about anywhere across
Eastbourne,you will see an excellent feature on our campaign for Fairtrade Town Status.
Thanks to Co-Editors Adam and Daniel for all the effort they put into this piece and
for the major awareness this will generate.


FTE August Surveys
During August we surveyed both local businesses and shoppers to find out how much Fair Trade produce is already available in Eastbourne and how many people either know about it or buy it. This will provide us with important benchmark information for our future Fair Trade Town application.
The information gathered went towards helping us prepare our free Fairtrade Shopping Guide for  Eastbourne which we distributed through East Magazine and appears in this site.


Council Motions

Both Eastbourne Borough Council and East Sussex County Council debated motions supporting
Fair Trade at their July full council meetings. Here in Eastbourne we held a well supported
lobby of the Council before their meeting which has attracted local media coverage both before
and since the event.

Eastbourne Borough Council passed - after an impassioned debate - the original motion proposed
by Council Leader Ian Lucas, while the amended motion proposed by the opposition group based
on the Fair Trade Foundation suggested motion was narrowly defeated.


Uckfield achieve Fair Trade Town Status

FTE have sent their congratulations to Uckfield Town Council on achieving Fair Trade Town
Status. They are the first town in the Wealden District Council area to gain the award.
We have also suggested that a representative from their successful campaign might come
along to share their story with us.

Uckfield now join regional neighbours Lewes and Brighton in gaining the Fair Trade Town mark.


Fair Trade Shop opens in Eastbourne!

A brand new and 100% Fair Trade shop has just opened in the Enterprise Shopping Centre,
behind Eastbourne Railway Station. The Fair Trading Post is run by Pauline Stapleton and
can be found halfway down the rear aisle on the ground floor. Drop in between 9.45am
and 5pm Monday to Saturday or call 01323 642681 for more details. We all wish her
well with this exciting new venture!




www.fairtradeeastbourne.org.uk ©